In a small town in post-World-War-II France, an unhappy sixteen-year-old (Janine Castang) tries to escape her dreary situation by any means at her disposal. Three successive friends (Michel...
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In a small town in post-World-War-II France, an unhappy sixteen-year-old (Janine Castang) tries to escape her dreary situation by any means at her disposal. Three successive friends (Michel Davenne, a married lover; Raoul, a fellow thief; Mauricette Dargelos, a photographer and fellow prisoner) help her learn from her mistakes.Written by
English Showalter <email@example.com>
Truffaut originally wanted to do this movie, but died. He seems to have left behind notes. What might they have contained, I wonder: "Alright, there's this young chick, and she's all horny and a juvenile delinquent and she just does what she wants. And we'll have lots of excuses for boobs and lingerie." Hat's off to the genius.
This starts out pretty entertaining. A look into a girls life in France in the late 40s.
But lo and behold, who would have guessed it: after 20 minutes it turns into the number 1 passion of French men: a Lolita fantasy.
Yes, an insecure grown man who is very supposedly married hooks up with a teenage girl... In fact as we all know from decades of French movies this is yet another French man's wet dream brought to the screen. So was Truffaut no different? Too bad.
The girl in this movie seduces the man and that makes it credible, plausible and "proof" that this is not Pedophilia. Well at least we believe it, won't we?
Unfortunately it is just that: Pedophilia. There are lots of gratuitous scenes of the girl wearing lingerie etc. Of course those scenes had to be there. Otherwise we couldn't possibly have followed this deep and meaningful story... Because you know she just happens to be a kleptomaniac and she just happens to love lingerie. So she has to try on what she steals doesn't she? She could have stolen tractors or food but who wants to see her eating a baguette on a tractor, right? Right.
Later on they check into 2 separate hotel rooms as father and daughter. But grandma concierge knows everything ... she doesn't really approve but hey, this is France, he's 40 and she's 16, no problem!
I guess everything is fine - Charlotte Gainsbourg was SEVENteen at the time. Quite old actually to be in a French movie about defloration.
If you are not convinced by the noble intentions now, there are women's prison scenes and cat fights in the movie as well.
So you see, this is really just an innocent and totally non-sexist totally non-speculative totally non-exploitative look into a young girls life.
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